How To Get Into College
Ian Osmond (AKA Xiphias Gladius, Esq.)
Getting into college these days is a competitive business. Luckily, you're competing against people who have no clue what they are doing. Unluckily, neither do you. So, with the clue or two you may glean from this manuscript, you will be ahead of the game.
Colleges look at the following five things, which will
be dealt with in this paper in order of importance:
A. Transcript B. SAT/ACT scores C. Teacher recommendations D. Essays E. Resume - a list of all the stuff you've done besides school
Section 1 - Transcript
For those of you who don't recognize the term, this is
the official copy of your grades in High School. "What?" you cry? " thought those were practice grades!" Never fear! Your problem can be solved simply with a bobby pin, some white-out and a ball-point pen!
The locks on school file cabinets are rather pitiful.
Frankly, I've never successfully picked one, but I am a klutz anyway, and need a professional lock-gun to pick my teeth. Nonetheless, once you have your official transcript in your sweaty little hands, your work is nearly done.
My High School makes it easy. Each year's grade record
is printed on a separate standard oversize mailing label. The final GPA and class rank are printed on a standard normal mailing label. The printing is done with a nine-pin dot- matrix printer on draft quality. A student from Arlington High merely needs to procure five mailing labels, re-print his/her transcript, with the grades s/he INTENDED to get, re- calculate and print his/her GPA, and put down a new, reasonable, class rank.
Section 2 - SAT/ACT Scores
The Scholastic Aptitude Test and the American College
Test are the two standard tests requested by colleges. YOU NEED TAKE ONLY ONE OF THESE! Of the two, the ACT provides the more accurate indicator of probable performance in college, as it tests reading, math, deductive reasoning, and science ability. NOBODY in the Northeast takes the ACT.
A really good score on the SAT is about 1100 - 1200, and
there are three ways to do this. The first, and most highly recommended, is to be a genius. Failing that, take a lot of expensive SAT preparatory courses. The third method requires some work.
First, practice your guidance counselor's signature.
Second, steal one piece of his/her stationery. Sign up to take the SAT somewhere other than your school. Bribe a local genius to take the test for you. Type a description of the genius on the stationary, saying that the person of that description is you, and sign it WITH THE GUIDANCE COUNSELOR'S NAME. This method has several advantages. You get a better score on the SAT, the genius gets extra pocket money and a chance to practice taking the test, and, you don't have to wake up early on a Saturday.
Section 3 - Teacher Recommendations
If no teacher really likes you a lot, try bribery, or
blackmail if you are getting short of cash.
Section 4 - Essays
Another cash-intensive area, there is much precedent for
bribery here, too. Again, if you can't, merely pay someone who can. After all, when you get right down to it, isn't that the basis of our economic system? Really, that's the foundation of Western Civilization, so how could it be wrong?
Section 5 - Your Resume
This section is weighted the least of the five major
areas, which is unfortunate, because, with a little work, your resume can be spectacular! It is worth your while to turn in an outstanding resume, not only to get into college, but also as practice for later life, in the business world.
The major rule in college resume writing is: there is
nothing too insignificant, pointless, pitiful, or stupid to put on a resume. Hey, let's face it, colleges are pretty much looking for length. I'd like to give you a few examples of things you could put on a college resume, with real-world translations.
College Translation / Comments I led an improvisational performance I was the class troupe that staged impromptu routines clown. for the amusement of my classmates at periodic points during the year.
A home-course in hostile negotiations I fought with my gave me the skills necessary to enter parents. into contract in today's competitive business world. Independent research into the effects Oh, c'mon - you can of certain chemical substances on the figure this one human neurosystem. out!
Studied the trade of locksmithing Hey, I really know in order to learn a trade and become a someone who did more-rounded individual this!
Utilizing hard-to-come-by periodicals, I collect rare I increased my appreciation of art- Swedish porn mags. photography, and of the human form
Independent research into computer Well, I was security systems and cryptoanalysis, arrested, but specifically as it pertains to the the judge really Internet, and to the UNIX operating liked me! system, gave me an opportunity to meet contacts who may be important in later life.
My leadership position in a local Our gang managed to youth group taught me responsibility, increase its turf loyalty, and trust. I was able to lead six blocks last our organization through a period of month. growth and expansion.
As you can see, there is nothing which can't be phrased
in a positive manner! A few pointers on how to phrase things:
1. Stick in the phrase "independent research" a lot. You can do well with these words. 2. Keep a thesaurus handy. You don't want to use the exact same words too often. 3. Colleges like stuff that shows leadership and maturity - aim for that in how you phrase stuff. 4. Don't use profanity. 5. Do use a spell-checker. Nothing is more embarrassing to you and to the college than your claiming that you won a "speling bee". 6. Get everything in BEFORE THE DEADLINE.
I hope this paper has been useful to you, and good luck
to you as you go through the college application process. Remember, many of the skills you will learn from this process will be useful in later life, too!
<iphias Gladius, Esq.